Alpine junior Christian Lundgaard will make his IndyCar debut next weekend, the Dane running with Rahal Letterman Lanigan in the Big Machine Spiked Coolers Grand Prix that will be held on Indy's road course.
Lundgaard recently sampled an IndyCar during a test with RLL at Barber Motorsports Park, and team boss Bobby Rahal was impressed with the ART Grand Prix F2 driver's display.
"We were very pleased with the job that Christian did at our recent test at Barber Motorsports Park and are looking forward to seeing him perform at Indianapolis Motor Speedway," said Rahal.
"It’s going to be a new experience and a big challenge due to the lack of practice time compared to other races.
"The road course is very much like European circuits given that it was designed for Formula 1 and Grand Prix races, so I think it will be less of an issue than going to one of our more traditional IndyCar race tracks.
"Given the lack of test time and practice time, we don’t have any grand expectations of him other than to go out and do a steady job and go from there."
Lundgaard - a two-time winner in Formula 2 - had a chance to visit the Speedway and gauge Indy's 14-turn, 2.439-mile road course. And the Dane, who will take over the #45 Honda-powered RLL entry from Santino Ferrucci, is raring to go.
"I’m super excited to try Indy Car next week," said the 20-year-old Alpine junior.
"I’ve been very fortunate so far in my career to drive some incredible race cars and I’m looking forward to officially adding IndyCar to that list.
"In preparation for this race, I tested the car and it felt pretty awesome and I’m sure it will feel even better at a race weekend in race conditions alongside all the hugely talented drivers in the field.
"There’s been a lot of work to make this happen and prepare as best as possible and I’m feeling ready for the challenge. I’ve actually watched all IndyCar races this year, so to be given the chance to line up on the grid is amazing.
"There will be a lot to learn in a short space of time but trying something new excites me. I can’t thank enough Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing, Alpine, my sponsors and investors for supporting me with this opportunity. It’s a unique chance and I can’t wait to give it my all."
Davide Brivio, Alpine F1 Team Racing Director, added: "IndyCar is a brilliant, competitive series with very strong contenders and we are excited to see how Christian converts this opportunity.
"Christian remains an important part of the Alpine Academy as he has shown huge promise throughout his junior career.
"Now, two seasons into FIA Formula 2, we are evaluating different options for the next stage, but for this particular moment we are just focusing on the present; enjoy a different type of car and environment, work hard and deliver on track.
"I’m sure Christian will enjoy it, and I can’t wait to see the race!"